When the courtroom door closed behind Aurora, Co., theater killer James Holmes, the last sound he heard was cheering — “not for him but for his ruin,” the Denver Post reports. Judge Carlos Samour Jr. yesterday sentenced Holmes to the maximum time in prison possible, 12 consecutive life sentences in prison, one for every person he killed on July 20, 2012, followed by another 3,318 years for trying to kill 70 other people and plotting to blow up his apartment. There is no chance for parole.
The millennia-spanning sentence is one of the longest ever handed down in the nation. Samour delivered it without once saying Holmes’ name or even speaking directly to him. When he was finished, shortly before noon on the 175th day that Holmes spent in court, Samour looked toward the killer with a scowl uncharacteristic of the normally even-tempered judge. “Sheriff,” he barked, “get the defendant out of my courtroom, please.” The courtroom audience burst into applause when Samour delivered his final rebuke. There were whoops and cheers that only grew louder when the crowd realized Samour would do nothing to stop them. One woman shouted, “Loser! Loser! Loser!” Prosecutors have requested that Holmes pay restitution of more than $700,000, an amount that could rise in the coming days as more expenses are added up.